Foreign Minister, a politician of unique experience, who, up till then, had
been censured, more for his willingness to compromise than for his
impulsiveness,, and finally the Minister Seyda, who had always been one
of the most enthusiastic seekers after an understanding with Russia.
Each of these three Ministers feared that the formula employed in the
Agreement, and more particularly the fact that the question of Poland's
frontiers had not, (as heretofore in even- Russo-Polish Agreement) been
mentioned, could be variously interpreted by the opponent when the time
for the territorial settlement in Europe drew near.
For the Poles, it clearly meant a return to the frontier of the Riga
Treaty as it existed in 1939, while the Soviet Government, according to
Zaleski, might conceivably argue as follows : " The German-Soviet
Treaties have lost their validity, but our claim to the possession of the
Eastern provinces of Poland springs from a different source—the will of
the people (expressed in the elections to the national assemblies), who
have voted for the incorporation of Western White Ruthenia andc Western
Ukraine * into the Soviet Union."
The possibility that the Soviet Government might adopt this line of
argument could not be excluded. And indeed, the ink of Maisky's
signature on the Treaty, literally had no time to dry, before he began using
this very same argument in his speech.
An additional point at issue was the feeling of humility engendered by
the term 6 amnesty,' which had been inserted in the Pact in connection
with those Polish citizens who were deported to Soviet Russia.
It must be emphasised very clearly that this opposition was not directed
against the conclusion of an agreement with Russia, but against the ' form
which this agreement had taken.' As the Polish opposition pointed out,
negotiations should not have been conducted with the help of Great
Britain only, but also with the backing and support of the U.S.A. who,
though not formally at war, comprised a Power whom the Soviets urgently
needed at that time.
Sikorski was attacked from all quarters. He vehemently defended
himself. In his speech a week later on August 8th to the soldiers of the
I Army Corps in Scotland, he justified his policy :
" Negotiations with Russia were most difficult. With the assistance of
Great Britain, particularly Mr. Eden, finally all the points which I had
advance into Europe. Sosnkowski was recognised to be one oi those men respon-
sible for the victory of 1920. He was Minister of War frcm 1927-1931, and later
the Commander of the Army. As the Commander of the Southern front in the
campaign of 1939, he was the first Polish and Allied military chief to gain a victory
over the Germans, smashing the armoured corps c Germania * near Lw6w. In a
long-lasting battle he fought until the end and when his army was finally destroyed
(and the Russians had entered Poland) and his road to retreat cut off, Sosnkowski
accompanied by a few men, made his escape^ passing through the Carpathian
In Sikorski's Government Sosnkowski had been the liaison Minister between
that Government and the Underground in Poland, but after the pact with Russia